During a special ceremony, newly appointed Princeton Police Chief Jon Bucchere and Captain Christopher Tash were formally sworn by Mayor Mark Freda.
The Princeton Police Department’s color guard entered the Princeton Council chambers, followed by Princeton police officers who filled the room and stood against the walls of the meeting room at the Princeton Council’s Nov. 14 meeting.
On Nov. 1, Bucchere and Tash began their jobs, following the retirement of former Police Chief Christopher Morgan. Tash was chosen to fill the captain’s vacancy, created when Bucchere was promoted to police chief.
Bucchere, who is the third police chief of the consolidated Princeton Police Department, joined the former Princeton Borough Police Department in 1999, Freda said. Bucchere rose through the ranks, working as a patrol officer and detective. He earned a promotion to sergeant in 2007.
After the former Princeton Borough Police Department and the former Princeton Township Police Department merged, Bucchere held the rank of sergeant until his promotion to lieutenant in 2016, Freda said. He was named captain in 2020.
Once he was sworn into office as police chief, Bucchere turned to Freda and the Princeton Council and thanked them for their leadership and support.
“In today’s day and age, policing is evolving every day and to be quite honest, without your support and without your guidance, our job would be nearly impossible. We thank you for all of that,” Bucchere said.
The new police chief praised the Princeton Police Department officers “for all the work you do, day in and day out. Each day, you come to work, face new challenges and take them head-on. You do a fantastic job.”
Bucchere also thanked his family and the Princeton community. Without their support, “our jobs would be very difficult. We leave to take care of Princeton to make it safer and better for the people who live, work and visit here,” he said.
There have been times when his family has been left with snow to shovel, and missed holidays and sports events, Bucchere said. He thanked his wife and children for their support while he pursued a career as a police officer.
Freda also administered the oath of office to Tash, who was promoted to captain.
Tash joined the Princeton Borough Police Department in 2000. He served as a field training officer for young police officers and in the Safe Neighborhoods Bureau. He was assigned to the Detective Bureau and was also the juvenile officer.
He was promoted to sergeant in 2010, and to lieutenant in 2017. As a lieutenant, he oversaw the Detective Bureau, the Safe Neighborhoods Bureau, the Traffic Safety Bureau and the Communications Bureau.
Prior to joining the Princeton Police Department, Tash was a state investigator with the New Jersey Attorney General’s Office in the Division of Gaming Enforcement and the Division of Criminal Justice, Freda said.
Tash praised the police officers and said the Princeton Police Department is recognized consistently for being one of the premiere and progressive police departments in New Jersey.
“It is a testament to you and all the hard work you do. We have been fortunate, in the 10 years since consolidation, with our leadership,” Tash said, in a nod to former police chiefs Nicholas Sutter and Christopher Morgan.
“We are extremely fortunate to have Jon (Bucchere). I am looking forward to some of the things that he has planned, and where he will move the Police Department,” Tash said, as the ceremony wrapped up.